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These days more and more consumers are going green – checking labels, being extra careful about what comes into their homes. And they are increasingly discovering environmentally friendly “secrets” that homemakers and handymen have been using for centuries.  Last week, we touched on air-purifying plants, so let’s look at some green home cleaning alternatives today!

Linseed Oil

Savvy woodworkers have been using linseed oil for years because they appreciate the clean shine and quality texture the oil offers. A completely pure and natural product, linseed oil penetrates well and hardens to an even, protective sheen. Plus, most linseed oil goes on clear, preserving the unique color and grain of the wood. You can buy high-grade polymer oils that are thick and durable or lighter versions that offer a clearer, cleaner finish that seeps easily into the wood rather than sinking deep. Because all finish is a matter of preference, we recommend getting small quantities of several varieties and trying it out on sample of scrap wood first.


Used by vintners for millennia to keep from wasting substandard grapes, and used by our grandparents before the advent of the “cleaner aisle” at the grocery store, vinegar remains a terrific, safe and natural all-purpose cleaning product. Mixed with baking soda or on its own, vinegar can be used in kitchens and baths to cleanse counter tops, deodorize and clean sinks and drains, and clean out your garbage disposal. You can also mix it with a baking soda and water solution to clean tile and laminate floors. Initially, the smell takes a little getting used to, because most of us are accustomed to those over-odorized chemical cleaners, but once you do, you will hardly notice the smell – you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oils if you just can’t stand the vinegar smell!

Baking Soda

Commonly paired with vinegar, this old school cleaning champion also works great on its own. Baking soda is not naturally occurring, but it is made from safe and non-toxic ingredients, primarily, soda ash. Used for years to neutralize odors in the freezer, baking soda is also great for neutralizing acid-based odors in water and even in the air. Sprinkle some baking soda on a damp cloth and, presto, you have a gentle, non-abrasive cleanser for kitchen counter, sinks, bathtubs, ovens and fiberglass – and you won’t need those old yellow rubber gloves either! Plus, adding baking soda to laundry helps to neutralize odors (including sweat) and remove stains. Great for athletes or folks that really put the “work” in a workday.

Simple Green Naturals

If you’re not ready for the do-it-yourself cleaners, but still want to decrease your environmental impact, Simply Green Naturals is a great middle ground.  Simple Green Naturals are 100% naturally derived using ingredients such as chicory, coconut, corn, palm, salt, sugar and water. The entire product line is non-toxic, biodegradable and made exclusively with essential oils and plant extracts.

What types of cleaners do you use in your home? Do you have any great recipes? We’d love to hear how you’ve improved your home with green cleaning in the comments below!

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Smith & Associates

Smith & Associates


At Smith & Associates Real Estate, we are an elite group of connected and experienced connoisseurs and aficionados of great living in Tampa Bay. For more than 40 years, we've helped individuals and families acquire homes that both complement and accommodate their unique sense of luxury.

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  1. Graham Poole says:

    So the ingredients mentioned in simply green naturals may also prove as good cleaners?

  2. Its really A completely pure and natural product, linseed oil penetrates well and hardens to an even, protective sheen.

  3. You forgot to mention Lemon juice. It is sometimes better than vinegar, because it has a better smell. I used it to remove limescale from by shower faucet. Pretty decent stuff.


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